Nurturing Nature’s Best at DDA’s Biodiversity Parks

Owned and developed by Delhi Development Authority (DDA) in collaboration with Center for environment management of degraded ecosystems (CEMDE), Yamuna and Aravali biodiversity parks are first of its kind in India harboring natural reserves including hundreds of vanishing species of native flora and fauna which used to exist 100 years ago and has become extinct locally. Delhi Development Authority is playing a key role in developing the green spaces in the form of regional parks, district parks, green belts and the neighborhood greens which falls into the its jurisdiction. Works of developing the biodiversity parks, rejuvenation of water bodies, revival of lakes are into process with the aim of reviving the lost natural heritage of life systems of Delhi.

Exploring Biodiversity

Yamuna Biodiversity Park

Yamuna Biodiversity Park is spread over a sprawling 457 acres of land, dedicated to protect the natural environment along Yamuna. This park has become home for biologically rich wetlands, wide variety of fruit yielding species, grassland communities and abundance of medicinal herbs. The two major features of the park are the visitor’s zone and the nature reserve zone. “Welcome Rock facet” located right to the entry of the park represents the origin of the Ganga and Yamuna and their convergence at Allahabad. The trails which lead to Bambusetum, the Nature interpretation Centre, Butterfly Park, and ayurvedic hut are the prominent places of visit. The classical building of the nature interpretation centre is beautiful and elegant floored with red carpet, attractive interiors, touch screens, visual aids and the panels depicting various biodiversity levels provide an insight into several concepts of biodiversity. Landscaping left of the park is two shallow valleys that represent rangelands with 10 mounds depicting different ecosystems present from foothills of the Himalayas (siwaliks) through Yamuna basin till the confluence of Yamuna and Ganga. While passing through loop trail of the park you will come across bouncing hares and even get to watch red-wattled lapwings and other exotic birds. At the exit of butterfly conservatory located the west side of the park you will enjoy the view of resident ducks wetlands and huge variety of fishes. Yamuna Biodiversity Park is emerging as Delhi’s most visited public place and a prominent center of learning and understanding of nature’s rich heritage. This park can easily be approached from: – I) East Delhi through Bhajanpura, ii) South and central Delhi through ISBT, iii) North Delhi through Burari.

This Biodiversity park is 15 kms from north-east of Connaught Place and 4 kms north of ISBT.

Aravalli Biodiversity Park

Spread over an area of 692 acres Aravalli Biodiversity Park is located near Vasant Vihar. The undulating landscape of Aravalli biodiversity with gentle slopes, shallow valleys and elevated ridges dotted with numerous morrum and clay mined pits of varying contours, shapes and sizes will amaze you to the core. The two major zones of the park are the visitor’s zone and the nature reserve zone. once you enter the park the first community you will encounter at the poorvi marg gate is the young plantation of the moist decidious forest community that have some of the most unique species of trees such as Madhuca longifolia (Mahua), Diospyros melanoxylon (Tendu) etc. you will truly be amazed to see the fully developed top canopy of the native forest which attains the height of 40-50 feet. While passing by you will come across uncommon birds like the black-breasted redstart, ashy prinia and the red whiskered bulbul. The unique features developed at the visitor’s zone are arboreta, rangeland, Lake Ecosystem, wetland with riparian vegetation. The conservatory of orchid species and ferns and allies are the high points of the park. The conservatories of butterflies, tuberous and bulbous plants consists some of the most exotic species of the park. The undulating water body supports native ducks and aquatic vegetation. The trail adjacent to the office complex passes from the conservatory shallow valley, herbal plants and through stairway commonly known as amphitheatre. The conservatory of the butterflies adjacent to the stairway is a saucer shaped depression harboring native bush vegetation is home to thousands of butterflies belonging to 30-40 species.

Aravali Biodiversity Park is situated on the south central ridge is bounded clock wise by JNU (Nelson Mandela Marg) the Mehrauli – Mahipalpur road, NH-8 and the Palam road and the southern boundary of Vasant Vihar. You can approach this Biodiversity Park, either from Vasant Vihar- Poorvi Marg gate located at about: 4 km south west of Moti Bagh, and 2 km west of Jawahar Lal Nehru University (Munirka) or from the Vasant Kunj Institutional gate which is about 3.5 km north of Mahipalpur and one km west of Vasant Kunj Malls.

Reasons to visit Biodiversity Parks

Biodiversity parks are one of its kind harbouring natural resources of the biotic communities and ecosystems.

1. The interesting riverside walk proves too scintillating to miss.

2. The theme gardens of the biodiversity parks are unique facilitating people of all age groups to enjoy nature in its purest form.

3. The biodiversity parks provide opportunities for ecological education, leading to awareness and participation in campaign sites, seminars, workshops, and exhibitions based on various themes in the open area of park.

4. Vast range of flora and fauna species will enhance knowledge level of the visitors to a great extent.

5. These parks promote eco-tourism, social activity and educational value among people of all age groups.